This post has nothing to do with Michael Jackson, I just thought the title was appropriate.
But I will say this about MJ: the dude could dance. He had more talent in his big toe than I will ever have. Actually, the title of this post refers to the fact that It is tough letting go of this blog. I am having withdrawl symptoms. Every week I feel the need to post something. So maybe I will. The blog gives me a forum for ranting and complaining about everything that bothers me, which is a lot these days.
For example, you remember my post last July about the Uygers of Xinjiang province in China? Well as you may have seen on the news, the fighting has intensified. It’s funny how you suddenly become more interested in a place once you have been there.
Here is the link to that post:
Here is an article of the conflict happening there now. I think you know who’s side I am on.
Now for something completely different:
My sister Katrina made a video on her Mac of her visit to see me in Cairo last December. After some difficulty I managed to compress the file and upload it to my web site for your enoyment. It is 94MB so it takes a few minutes to load but it’s entertaining and worth 30 minutes of your life to watch. So, enjoy!
Link to Katrina’s video. It seems to only run in real player. I am working on the technology. Does anyone know how to make it work?:
If you still want a cycling fix here are a couple blogs of other cyclists. This first one is about a women who will soon cycle from England to South Africa. She will start her trip in a couple weeks.
This one is from a couple who are biking around the world. They have cycled 56,000 km already and are now in the USA.
By the way, my cousin Ben Kilpela has finally started blogging again and in fact has written a book, a comic novel about growing up on a ferry boat. It is entitled The Skunk Island Ferry.
You can read an excerpt and see his blog here: http://copperharbor.blogspot.com/
I can write you some instructions as to how to get a video embedded into your posts, if you would so desire, such as this one on my wifes blog:
She has a wordpress blog as well, so the coding would be similar (although she has a different theme)
Dave, the problem seems to be that some people do not have the correct video codecs loaded onto their computers to read the file. It is an AVI file. I cannot embed it in WordPress because it exceeds their upload size limit (it is 94MB).
I want to remind you that I have also started adding to my blog at http://www.circumnavigating.blogspot.com
I hope you enjoy it.
I hope that Trina just makes me a DVD of her trip and sends it to me. I live in a slow download area of the world.
Thanks for the clue to your blog at Xinjiang. I was searching for it and couldn’t seem to find it quickly.
For those having the same withdrawal pains as I, try starting over and re-reading the blog along with the comments, many of which I missed. And that goes for Trina’s blog too, to speak of which I which she would continue writing.
yes I have been reading your blog also. Fascinating stuff. For those of you who are interested my uncle ran a oil tanker in the Caribbean for a while. His stories about it are amazing (getting busted by the Bajan customs for bringing a gun into the country for example). You can read about it here:
Also, for those who would wish to download the avi and do not have the codecs, I would recommend the Combined Community Codec Pack. I switched from K-Lite to CCCP a few years ago and have not been disappointed. I have been able to play everything I have run across.
Here is the link. It is, of course, free. http://www.cccp-project.net/
I would also recommend Media Player Classic, which is included in CCCP for playing all of your video files. It is a simple player which PLAYS FILES, unlike Windows Media Player which connects to the internet, plays advertisements, tries to unsuccessfully download codecs, has confusing “librarys”, and just does a whole slew of things that you really don’t want it to do when you just want to play a file, which it can’t even do half of the time. MPC is a 5 MB exe file which will play all of your video files, and it will ONLY play your video files. It doesn’t connect to the internet and try to diversify your 401K behind your back while you are watching the video.
Note: The codecs are for Windows. I’m assuming that if you run Linux, you will probably try playing it on 5 different distributions and then wind up coding your own more efficient player because you aren’t satisfied with the FPS to Memory Used ratio. If you have a Mac, I’m assuming it should be able to play this already – otherwise why would you pay twice the price of a PC for something that you cannot upgrade and that isn’t compatible with any software? We will have to wait and see if the new Google operating system can play it without codecs or not.
Thanks Dave. That technology is beyond me. The video runs on my PC but I am not sure why. When I click on the link it opens in real player. I dont’ remember having to load any special codecs.
Don, We can make a copy of the DVD and give it to Jojo when she is in Colorado. I have made plans ot be there also at the same time.
Kev – Apparently this didn’t post the first or second times, I will try splitting it in two, perhaps it was too long – – – here is an explanation and instructions:
1) It will have to be converted to FLV file format. (I didn’t look at it yet; if I am able to download it, I can convert if for you)
You will also need a method of playing this from your page (your page will contain the appropriate codecs for playing the file, not the viewing computer). I use the WordPress Plugin FLV Embed (http://www.channel-ai.com/blog/plugins/flv-embed/).
2) Size – I believe you provide your own hosting (hence http://kevinkoski.com) As long as you are hosting your own wordpress blog, you can upload via FTP (which is how I imagine you put the file at “http://kevinkoski.com/Travel/Cairo/Cairo small.avi”) and just write the appropriate code which will link the FLV player to the FLV video file. You don’t need to use WordPress’s uploading function.
-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=- Instructions -=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-
So, lets say you have an FLV version of the video uploaded to your website (“Cairoconverted.flv” for the sake of argument). (if you would like to try to convert, I use “Super” for FLV conversions http://www.erightsoft.com/SUPER.html — free, simple, and fast)
Lets say you have also installed “FLV Embed” as a plugin from your wordpress admin panel. (I’m running version 1.2.1)
Now, merely make a post as you would normally, but also add this one line of code:
[flv:http://kevinkoski.com/Travel/Cairo/Cairoconverted.flv 480 360]
FLV Embed will embed the file found at the path in to a window which is 480 pixels by 360 pixels into your blog post. You can change the two numbers at the end if you want to make it a different size. This will allow people to watch the video in a streaming format straight from your site.
This is one of the easiest ways I have found to embed video; if you do it one or two times, it will wind up being quicker than making a link on a separate page that you had to write. Plus, it is easier for people to be able to just click on a “play” button and instantly watch the video than to have to bother with downloading a file. (Although personally, I like to be able to download the file if I like it and want to save it).
If you decide to try this and have any problems or questions, feel free to ask.
Here is the second part:
… Actually I decided to try it out with this video since I am talking about how easy it is…
To download your video (about 1 minute), convert it (7 min), upload to my site (16 min, converted size with my settings was 77MB), make a blog post for (1 min) took me about 25 minutes all told while I was doing other stuff.
If you wish to try it on your page without bothering with the conversion, you can download the file at http://szyszkoski.com/kblog/wp-content/uploads/2009/06/Cairoconverted.FLV
The good thing about FLV Embed is that the controls are very simple. This is also a downside however, if you close your browser halfway through, it will need to re-buffer and you cannot skip to where you left off until it buffers up to that point. If, however, you watch 1/2 of the video, pause it, go to the bathroom, and come back, you can resume play and it will have continued buffering while you were in the bathroom.
Don – For the curiosity’s sake, if you get a chance, try this out. If you have anything faster than dialup, it *should* buffer faster than it plays. This is quite a long video (30 min 49 sec).
Codecs: Codecs are just the encoding / compression mechanism which determine how the video is saved. When Katrina made the video, she (or her software) picked certain codecs to use to compress the video when she saved it. To play the video, you need these codecs installed on your machine in order to decompress/decode the video.
Apparently, you already have them. You may have gotten them by default with your operating system if they are common codecs, or you may have inadvertantly installed them as part of some video software.
It opens with Real Player because apparently that is set as the default program to open AVI files, or at least AVI files encoded in this particular way. This is a Windows setting that can be changed if you so desire by right-clicking the file, clicking “Open With…”, clicking “Choose Program”, choosing your preferred video player, checking the “Always use the selected program to open this kind of file” and clicking “OK”.
This ordeal can be bypassed for the average viewer by following the steps in the above two posts to post it inside your blog as a streaming video, as I did here http://szyszkoski.com/kblog/?p=64
No codecs will be necessary on the viewing machine, because your website will take care of that. (specifically, FLV Embed)
CCCP is a pack of all of the codecs that you will concieveabley need for many different types of video. If someone lacked codecs, installing CCCP would resolve that problem and make the video playable. (As well as virtually every type of video one may encounter)
Hopefully this has helped explain the situation rather than lead to more confusion. If you or any other interested party has any questions, feel free to contact me.
Ahh, I think I misunderstood you. You said that when you click on the link it opens in Real Player. Apparently if you have Real Player, it will stream an AVI straight from the web. I don’t have Real Player, so I wasn’t quite on the same wavelength (I did install it once to stream a MTU Hockey game, but then uninstalled it). I thought you were talking about clicking on the file on your computer.
Dave, that’s right, I have real player installed so when I click the link here
It opens the page in my web site. Then when yuo click the “Cairo” link in my web site it opens real player and runs the video.
Well if think we got it covered. If anyone wants to see the video they have a number of options now. Thanks.